Even in these days of austerity, savage budget cuts, voter suppression efforts, radical gerrymandering, and favors from elected officials to their cronies, some stories still can shock our sensibilities. This is one. Read the rest of this entry
I was on my way to my local grocer this evening when I learned on my iPhone that Steve Jobs had died. It was one of those moments that, as you grow older, become oh, so familiar…time stops, and that sharp pain of sadness dominates. My earliest memory of this kind of pain was the assassination of JFK, to whom my blog, this small planet, is dedicated, to the deaths of Martin Luther King, Jr., Bobby Kennedy, the Challenger explosion, the death of Teddy Kennedy, and even Ronald Reagan’s, with whom I disagreed on almost every political issue, but who I admired for his positive personal presence.
The pain of the loss of Steve Jobs, though, is different, since he has been a constant personal companion to me over the years. Read the rest of this entry
President Obama has declared that September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month. There is a lot to be aware of. Our kids are fat and getting fatter. Despite an increase in attention, advocacy, action and media spotlight directed at the problem and its attendant health risks, the needle hasn’t budged in the last year or so. On the other hand, much really good work that has potential for long-term impact has been done. We all celebrated a recent triumph when Congress passed the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, which made landmark changes to the school nutrition landscape. New rules and guidelines will effect 50 million kids. Read the rest of this entry
At this hour, rain bands are coming ashore at Nags Head, North Carolina. The main body of the storm is expected ashore between 2 and 6 am eastern time. This massive storm is then forecast to run north up the East Coast of the US, crossing Washington, DC, Delaware, New York and Philadelphia, then up into New England and back into the Atlantic over the Maritime Provinces of Canada. I’ve kept the television on all day with one eye on the the stock market and the other on hurricane coverage. The weather coverage, at least on NBC, has been very good (compared to past storms) without most of the silly hyperbole and running around trying to find some wind to stand in for a breathless on-scene report.
My big concern, though, is, are we prepared for a storm that could disrupt the lives of some 65 million Americans? Can we respond as a society to this kind of threat? Read the rest of this entry